Last week Tom, one of frequent commentator on our blog wrote a reply to my question of how was church that got me thinking about the church loving those who are older. Here’s portion of that comment:
Our church definitely aims at the younger (20-40) crowd, which creates some problems and tensions for us being 60 years old. The preaching is doctrinally sound and we enjoy/appreciate the sermons but the music portion is a Christian rock concert replete with lightshow, etc. The congregation’s singing cannot be heard above the din. That grates on us at times. There’s also lot’s of technology with many video messages on the big screen but I’ve noticed over the past year that not one “older” member has ever been featured, every speaker is under 40. In their goal to appeal to the young, older people are somewhat, no, make that pretty much ignored. As we get even older it’s going to feel less and less comfortable.
My heart was heavy reading this. I’m relatively young and am part of the Millennial generation. I am aware that my generation can be quite self-centered (generally speaking, I’m not saying everybody). And I want to share this to encourage those going to church who are younger than 40 to not forget those who are older.
Greet them. Talk to them. Say hi to them. Asked them their name. Ask them sincerely: “How are you?” Make it a point to talk to one or two older members before and after the service. I’m going to touch a sacred idol for some in Evangelicalism: From time to time have songs of worship that would minister to the older generation. Sometimes young people can make so much out of contemporary vs. traditional worship, etc. And pastors: Plan perhaps even monthly visitation to those who are older.
Don’t forget the church isn’t made up of only your peer group.
Don’t be trying to be so cool, you become a self-absorbed fool in God’s eye of not caring about whom God cares about. Don’t shut the old out. In a world that’s all about what’s new, be the one appreciate vintage.
I have written earlier this year a series of outline posts titled “ Bear with One Another With Generational Differences.” I hope it might be edifying.